Fayette farm's Christmas display benefits Toys For Tots - New York News

Fayette farm's Christmas display benefits Toys For Tots

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FAYETTE COUNTY, Ga. -

It is a Christmas tradition in Fayette County. Mike Gaddy pours on the festivities of the season at the Gaddy Farm on Sandy Creek Road. The event each year draws thousands with cars sometimes lined up a mile away from the turn.

In the age of computerized animatronics, Mike remains loyal to traditions. His displays are powered by old car parts and he has built by hand most of the displays, including a 20-foot high Ferris wheel that has been part of the light show for 22 years.

"We keep adding something every year and this is 26 years," said Gaddy.

They have never charged an admission, but in the past few years they started collecting for Toys For Tots and receive about 2,000 toys this year alone. They also collect donations for the March of Dimes which started after a family tragedy.

"We lost grandson about a year and a half ago. We've done all the walks that we could do. So, now we want to give to the March of Dimes for their premature birth," said Gaddy.

This year, Mike built a memorial. Statues representing his grandchildren fishing, something he loves. It includes Brady, his grandson that died. It also depicts Taylor, his twin sister who survived.

There is a bucket for donations to the March of Dimes. One Saturday night, a thief took the donations. Anger, heartbreak threatened to dim the Gaddy Christmas spirit.

"I wish the guy had come and knocked on the door because I would have helped him. It was like he disrespected my grandson when he took the money out of the bucket," said Gaddy.

Mike has invented some ways to deter a repeat. He need not worry. Friends and neighbors who had heard have overwhelmed them with donations. They plan to surprise their daughter with a gift to the March of Dimes in the name of Brady.

"It has turned out to be substantial and we are just tickled to do this to help our daughter heal," said Gaddy.

Mike is 65 years old now. He is an ex-boxer with a big heart. He has told his family when he is gone, they don't have to continue his show, but until that time he will entertain and help children through his passion for Christmas.

Address to Gaddy Farm: 898 Sandy Creek Rd Fayetteville, GA 30214

For more information on Toys For Tots click here.

For more information on March of Dimes in Georgia visit marchofdimes.com/georgia

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